Contract will help create and support over 120 jobs and economic growth in the Kitchener-Waterloo region
June 23, 2015
KITCHENER, ONTARIO — The Honourable Julian Fantino, Associate Minister of National Defence, today announced that Colt Canada has been awarded a $1.5 million contract to replace the Canadian Ranger’s Lee Enfield rifle. This contract will provide the Canadian Rangers with the opportunity to test the new rifle design over the summer. Following the testing period, and any necessary design amendments, a second contract will be awarded to Colt Canada to produce 6500 rifles, which will be phased into use by the Rangers between mid-2016 and late-2019.
The Canadian Rangers, a sub-component of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Reserve, provide patrols and detachments for national-security and public-safety missions in sparsely settled northern, coastal and isolated areas of Canada. They are considered the “eyes and ears” of Canada’s Arctic and contribute greatly to the Canadian Armed Forces’ ability to assert sovereignty in Canada’s north.
· As the government’s long-standing supplier and maintainer of small arms, Colt Canada used its expertise to assist the government in the competitive process to select the design and manufacture the rifles. The company, previously called Diemaco, has been Canada’s Small Arms Strategic Source and Centre of Excellence, since it was competitively selected as such in 1976.
· A Request for Proposal (RFP) for the new Ranger Rifle design was released in September 2014, with a contract award in early 2015. The manufacture of the rifles, between 2016 and 2019, will support the current 90+ jobs at Colt Canada and contribute to the creation of up to approximately 30 jobs in the Kitchener-Waterloo region.
· Stoeger Canada was the successful rifle contender in the Colt Canada Request for Proposal with a customized TIKKA T3 Compact Tactical Rifle.
· The Canadian Rangers currently use Lee Enfields rifles. While these rifles are still excellent tools for an Arctic environment, their replacement parts are becoming less available and may be completely unavailable after 2017. The Government of Canada is replacing the Lee Enfields with modern rifles to meet the Ranger’s needs into the future.
“The Canadian Rangers play a vital role in Canada’s ability to assert sovereignty in the North, and are critically important in the service they provide to the Canadian Armed Forces. Our Government is committed to ensuring they have the tools they need, and on behalf of our Government, I want to thank them for all they do to keep our borders and citizens safe and secure.”
The Honourable Julian Fantino, Associate Minister of National Defence
““This contract with Colt Canada will ensure that the Canadian Rangers get the equipment they need to protect Canada, while creating and supporting over 120 good and high-paying jobs in the Kitchener-Waterloo region.”
The Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Public Works and Government Services
Backgrounder – New Rifles for the Canadian Rangers